Joe Biden receives a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine at ChristianaCare Christiana Hospital in Newark. Leah Millis/Reuters
Gulf Today Report
US President-elect Joe Biden received his first dose of the coronavirus vaccine on live television in an effort to boost confidence in its safety ahead of its wide distribution next year.
He was vaccinated at a hospital not far from his Delaware home, hours after his wife, Jill Biden, did the same.
Biden has said he would make the fight against the coronavirus, which has killed more than 315,000 Americans and infected more than 17.5 million, his top priority when he takes office on Jan.20. At age 78, he is in the high-risk group for the highly contagious respiratory disease.
The injections came the same day that a second vaccine, produced by Moderna, will start arriving in states. It joins Pfizer’s in the nation’s arsenal against the COVID-19 pandemic, which has now killed more than 317,000 people in the United States and upended life around the globe.
But with vaccinations in limited supply until spring or summer, political leaders continue to urge people to stay at home and wear masks.
After getting the shot, a dose of the vaccine developed by Pfizer Inc, Biden praised medical professionals as “heroes.”
“I’m doing this to demonstrate that people should be prepared when it’s available to take the vaccine. There’s nothing to worry about,” Biden said. His wife, Jill Biden, who got the injection earlier in the day, stood by.
But Biden also noted that the vaccine would take time to roll out and that people should listen to medical experts and not travel for the upcoming holidays if possible.
He credited the scientists who worked on the vaccines, adding: “I think that the (Trump) administration deserves some credit, getting this off the ground with Operation Warp Speed.”
Vice President-elect Kamala Harris would likely get the vaccine next week, Biden’s transition team said.
Republican President Donald Trump frequently has played down the severity of the pandemic and overseen a response health experts say was disorganized, cavalier and sometimes ignored the science behind disease transmission.
NEW AMERICAN ECONOMY
Efforts to limit the economic fallout on Americans from the pandemic were boosted on Sunday when congressional leaders agreed on a $900 billion package to provide the first new aid in months, with votes likely on Monday.
Biden on Monday also named additional members to his National Economic Council (NEC), rounding out his economic policymaking team with people his transition office said would help lift Americans out of the economic crisis.
David Kamin, an official in former President Barack Obama’s White House, will be NEC deputy director, and Bharat Ramamurti, a former top economic adviser to Senator Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 presidential campaign, will serve as NEC deputy director for Financial Reform and Consumer Protection, Biden’s team said in a statement.
Joelle Gamble will be special assistant to the president for economic policy.
“This is no time to build back the way things were before - this is the moment to build a new American economy that works for all,” Biden said in the statement.
Top government officials last week joined the first Americans to be inoculated against COVID-19 as part of the largest largest vaccination campaign in the nation’s history.
As the United States wrestles with how to curb the spread of the COVID-19 delta variant — and President Joe Biden launches a push to get federal workers vaccinated — it’s painful to compare our struggle with that of the rest of the world.
The final bill includes $400 billion in one-time payments of $1,400 to most Americans, $300 a week in extended jobless benefits for the 9.5 million people thrown out of work in the crisis.
The White House said Biden will deliver remarks at sunset to honor those who lost their lives. He will be joined by first lady Jill Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and her husband, Doug Emhoff. They will participate in the moment of silence and lighting ceremony.
Residents were cut off in parts of the coastal state of Kerala as the rains, which started to intensify from late Friday, swelled rivers and flooded roads.
The group was snatched by the 400 Mawozo gang, which controls the Croix-des-Bouquets area east of the capital of Port-au-Prince, police inspector Frantz Champagne told the media on Sunday.
One of the injured was a student at the university, while the rest were not, Grambling State posted on Twitter. The school student was "treated for non-life-threatening injuries", and the person killed was not enrolled at the university.